Independent assessment finds city's cleanliness improving

Edinburgh’s streets are improving in cleanliness, according to the latest independent report by Keep Scotland Beautiful to the City of Edinburgh Council’s Transport and Environment Committee.

The Cleanliness of the City report assessed 97% of the city’s streets as ‘clean’, up from 92% in September and 95% in June, and surpassing the Council target of 95%.

The citywide Cleanliness Index Monitoring System (CIMS) score of 74 also exceeded the target of 72, as well as the most recent scores of 71 and 72 in September and June respectively.

In addition, enquiries over the two most complained-about issues - fly-tipping and litter - continued to fall – dropping 39% since September. Overall, 89% of complaints were dealt with within the agreed timescale, beating the Council’s target of 85%.

Complaints about dog fouling in particular between June and November 2016 were seen to fall by 50% from the same period in 2015.

Transport and Environment Convener, Councillor Lesley Hinds, said: “I am pleased with the latest Cleanliness results, which demonstrate that our efforts are having some impact on the condition of our streets.

“Our job is continuous though – we need to keep working hard to maintain and improve the situation – that’s why there are several initiatives underway, as well as a comprehensive Waste and Cleansing Improvement Plan, which is already beginning to see results.”

A number of projects and campaigns have been credited with helping to improve the city’s environment, including Our Edinburgh, an anti-litter campaign which saw a 52% increase in the amount of litter put in bins in its first phase. 

The second phase of the campaign focused on traders’ misuse of communal bins on Leith Walk, where around 50% of businesses were found not to have the correct waste contracts in place.

A citywide Waste and Cleansing Improvement Plan was also approved in November, focusing on key areas including missed and delayed bin collections, communal bins, fly-tipping and street cleansing and litter.

An update to Transport and Environment Committee on the plan reported an overall reduction in missed collections, as well as an increase in the percentage of street cleansing enquiries addressed within timescale.

Cleanliness of the City December 16 – in numbers

  • City wide CIMS score: 74; Citywide clean streets: 97% 
  • 16 out of 17 wards achieved a CIMS score of 67 or above (national target)
  • 11 out of 17 wards achieved a CIMS score of 72 or above (Council target)
  • 15 out of 17 wards achieved a percentage clean result of 95% or above (Council target)
  • Seven out of 17 wards achieved a percentage clean of 100%
  • Requests received during November for fly-tipping/dumping and litter were down 39% on the September 2016 figure.


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